William Gibson’s first novel Neuromancer exploded like a supernova in the science fiction scene, released in 1984. The shock waves after this explosion caused permanent damages in the science fiction scene which was somewhat static. As a result of this, Neuromancer was able to write the first novel that won the prestigious threesome Hugo, Nebula and Philip K. Dick awards. What made all these awards shine even more was the fact that that was the first grounds of the cyberpunk movement, a sub genre of science fiction. Cyberpunk was born when change in daily life due to fast technology merged with information that came from computers.
First to minds, then to infinity
William Gibson released only a dozen stories before introducing us to Neuromancer. Preparing the grounds for Neuromancer with two short stories “Johnny Mnemonic” and “Burning Chrome,” Gibson introduced a lot of the elements we are familiar with in stories, burning his style into our brains like a motif. The novel that opens with “Neuromancer is profound, kaleidoscopic, fast, gravity-resistant writer with advanced technology; he explains both the helpless and refreshing part of life keeping the city as the background in a hallucinating liveliness.” is one that begins the journey from pages to minds, then to infinity.
It is possible to see similarities with Philip K. Dick’s works and Samuel R. Delany’s first novels, authors who were pointed as revolutionary science fiction novelists on foreign grounds that William Gibson shed the light on. However the most important thing that differentiates Gibson from the rest is the perfect blend of how he mixes real life in a pot. This is why it is likely to come across Lou Reed, “Sunday Morning,” or “Watch out / The world is behind you” by The Velvet Underground in Gibson’s Neuromancer.
The synthesis of poetry, pop culture and technology
What makes Neuromancer this enlightening is how it cuts cords with it’s present and the freedom of it’s vision. Supporting the race that Gibson has created with computers and other technologies with surprising simulations causes the book to have different labels. Gibson has secret weapons such as mechanisation, races that have been mutilated between being lead by the human brain and cosmopolitan knowledge systems and the use of surprising computer mathematics. With the addition of all of this, Neuromancer has created an important synthesis of poetry, pop culture and technology.
Although ignored by critics, the main reason because Neuromancer had such an organic bond is the profound connection it has with the realities of human beings. Gibson’s courageous portrayal of the modern electronic age and redefinition of contemporary human experience that are shocking and emotional are highly important factors. Just like David Bowie’s re-creation of music on a timeless setting… Both disturbing, and exciting, yet Neuromancer is a masterpiece that points to outstanding conclusions about what technology means to people.
Just like I said in the beginning, it’s hard to think that the affect of Neuromancer that exploded like a supernova in the science fiction area will only be seen in the literary world. It’s possible to see the affects of the shock waves to a book that has been released 32 years ago, through the eyes of the modern age. The first examples to this comes from Interplay, a company built in the beginning of the 80’s as an American game developer and producer. The Neuromancer opera written by Jayne Wenger, Marc Lowenstein and Richard Marriott in 1995 is only one of the art forms the book has turned into.
It was impossible for Neuromancer to stay away from the movie scene, with it’s perfect character and novel structure and visual story that reflects the incidents in the most exciting way. Which is what happened. The Matrix trilogy that Wachowski brothers have written and directed with 4 Oscar awards is a great example of this. The movie that depicts a dystopic future is a true homage to Neuromancer with a story of understanding of a reality and a parallel universe.
The depths of the cyber world
Think of an author who is impeccable at the ability to disprove something. A kind that can push you to the depths of the cyber world with his weapon; a sentence. Neuromancer showed the future of science fiction to his audience. The point we’ve reached still has only one name, and that is William Gibson.